'Militant Piety' in 21st-Century Orthodox Christianity: Return to Classical Traditions or Formation of a New Theology of War?
The article focuses on the reclaiming of militaristic ideas and the emergence of specific “militant piety” and “theology of war” in the Orthodox discourse of post-Soviet Russia. It scrutinizes the increasing prestige of soldiering in the Church and its convergence with the army. This convergence generates particular hybrid forms, in which Church rituals and symbols interact with military ones, leading to a “symbolic reception of war” in Orthodoxy. The authors show that militaristic ideas are getting influence not only in the post-Soviet but also in American Orthodoxy; they consider this parallel as evidence that the process is caused not only by the political context—the revival of neo-imperial ideas in Russia and the increasing role of power structures in public administration—but is conditioned by socio-cultural attitudes inherent in Orthodox tradition, forming a type of militant religiosity called “militant piety”. This piety is not a matter of fundamentalism only; it represents the essential layer of religious consciousness in Orthodoxy reflected in modern Church theology, rhetoric, and aesthetics. The authors analyze war rhetoric while applying approaches of Karen Armstrong, Mark Juergensmeyer, R. Scott Appleby, and other theoreticians of the relationship between religion and violence.
The article was devoted the analysis adaptation strategies of the Roman Catholic and Russian Orthodox Churches to the new social and political conditions in the last decades. The author comes to the conclusion that Russian Orthodox Church chooses strategy of conservation to the new social and political conditions and Roman Catholic Church makes decision to follow democratic adaptation strategies.
The article is devoted to the peculiarities of the perception of the Orthodox doctrine and ritual in mass consciousness. Orthodoxy is considered not only as a component of domesticculture, but also as a result of modernization of the social space. The restoration of legal and cultural status of Orthodoxy has not resulted in the restoration of its influence overthe populationof the country, despite the claim for spiritual monopoly. Constantly interacting with mythological and secular factors of culture, Orthodoxy adapts itself for changing social conditions and is developed as multilevel and multiple religious system. Orthodoxy forcedly turns into the religion of the individual, which is reduced to convenient forms and is taken out from the public sphere. Only formalities of traditional ritual practice are fixed in the public space. The article analyses the main mythologemes, which arisebecauseof the orthodox way of living. Orthodoxy appears as one possible way of self-identification of the individual, having weak communications with religious consciousness. The patterns of the transformation of the religious doctrine in the ordinary consciousness, which arereduced to the designing of mythologemes with formally religious plot, the archetypical basis and secular functions are marked out.
The chapter focuses on one of the ways to communicate with the sacred popular among contemporary Russian Orthodox believers – written appealing to the saints (letters and notes). Although not happy at all about this habit, the Church managers allow to publish these letters in the parish newspapers and web-sites and in other church mass-media. Analysis of publications of the letters addressed to Saint Xenia of Petersburg proves that the Church publishes them as a part of its advertising campaign targeted on those people who prefer irregular religiosity (pilgrimages, letters to the saint, etc) to traditional regular parish life. The chapter develops Peter Berger’s metaphor of religious market.
The paper explores the Russian Orthodox Church (ROC) parish-based social work specifics. The Russian government call for Church participation in welfare provision on the one hand and the emphasize on the social work in church life, made by Patriarchy, on the other, are followed by the attempts of the parish-based social practices formalization. Analyzing the quantitative and qualitative data on parish-based social work in Russia, authors make the evaluation of the ROC’s social work scope in the country and characterize this’ activity specific features in comparison with the professional social work. The article comes to the conclusion, that the bigger part of the parish-based social work in Russia is performed as informal practices of daily mutual aid by non-professionals and it doesn’t fit narrow frame of the professional aid to the needy. The authors suggest, that the attempts of the church social work professionalization, such as formal reports and quantitative indicators may push parishes towards the minimization of their informal social activity, so significant for general population.
In this book the author explores the social, economic and legal status of the Russian lower clergy (priests, deacons and sacristans), its role in the parish life and the institutional history of the Russian parish in the 16-17th centuries. The institution of proprietary or private churches (German Eigenkirchenwesen) is analysed and compared with the analogous phenomena in Byzantium and Western and Central Europe. Special attention is given to state legislation and policy, which influenced the status of the lower clergy, and the formation of the clerical estate (dukhovnoe soslovie). Various sources have been examined: the tsar’s immunity charters, cadastres, private contracts, letters, literary works, materials from the archives of the bishop’s chancelleries etc.
The article considers the Views of L. N. Tolstoy not only as a representative, but also as a accomplisher of the Enlightenment. A comparison of his philosophy with the ideas of Spinoza and Diderot made it possible to clarify some aspects of the transition to the unique Tolstoy’s religious and philosophical doctrine. The comparison of General and specific features of the three philosophers was subjected to a special analysis. Special attention is paid to the way of thinking, the relation to science and the specifics of the worldview by Tolstoy and Diderot. An important aspect is researched the contradiction between the way of thinking and the way of life of the three philosophers.
Tolstoy's transition from rational perception of life to its religious and existential bases is shown. Tolstoy gradually moves away from the idea of a natural man to the idea of a man, who living the commandments of Christ. Starting from the educational worldview, Tolstoy ended by creation of religious and philosophical doctrine, which were relevant for the 20th century.
This important new book offers the first full-length interpretation of the thought of Martin Heidegger with respect to irony. In a radical reading of Heidegger's major works (from Being and Time through the ‘Rector's Address' and the ‘Letter on Humanism' to ‘The Origin of the Work of Art' and the Spiegel interview), Andrew Haas does not claim that Heidegger is simply being ironic. Rather he argues that Heidegger's writings make such an interpretation possible - perhaps even necessary.
Heidegger begins Being and Time with a quote from Plato, a thinker famous for his insistence upon Socratic irony. The Irony of Heidegger takes seriously the apparently curious decision to introduce the threat of irony even as philosophy begins in earnest to raise the question of the meaning of being. Through a detailed and thorough reading of Heidegger's major texts and the fundamental questions they raise, Haas reveals that one of the most important philosophers of the 20th century can be read with as much irony as earnestness. The Irony of Heidegger attempts to show that the essence of this irony lies in uncertainty, and that the entire project of onto-heno-chrono-phenomenology, therefore needs to be called into question.
The article is concerned with the notions of technology in essays of Ernst and Friedrich Georg Jünger. The special problem of the connection between technology and freedom is discussed in the broader context of the criticism of culture and technocracy discussion in the German intellectual history of the first half of the 20th century.